According to the Philippine government, the Tinikling is the national dance of the Philippines. It is the most popular and best known of all the dances in the Philippines. In English, the word Tinikling means “bamboo dance.”
Tinkiling is considered as one of the oldest dances from the Philippines. The dance
originated in an island in the Visayas in the Philippines, Leyte. The people of Leyte describe the
tikling bird as one of the most unique in its movements; how they walked around and between
the tree branches and some grass stems. This bird was named “tikling” which is where the name
for the dance Tinikling got its name. The people of Leyte were very creative and they imitated
the “tikling” bird by using bamboo poles.
There are many different versions of the story behind the Tiniking, many have been passed down through oral traditions and folklore. One of the stories of the Tinikling's origin may be made up, a fact, or part of a legend. The story says that the Tinikling started by the people who worked on the rice fields in the Philippines. When the Spaniards came from Spain and conquered the Philippines, the natives were sent to the haciendas. The natives lost control of their land because they were under an economic system that is largely based on rural and agricultural operations of large farmlands administered by caretakers for the King of Spain. The natives had to work all day to please the Spaniards. The natives could have completely lost control of their destiny under an exploitative system. The people of the Philippines worked in the rice fields for nearly four hundred years. The people who worked too slowly would be sent out of the rice fields for punishment. Their punishment was to stand between two bamboo poles cut from the grove. Sometimes, the sticks would have thorns sticking from their segments. The poles were then clapped to beat...